UND Director Of Facilities Management Elected As APPA Senior Representative

Larry Zitzow, University of North Dakota’s director of facilities management, was recently elected to serve as the Senior Representative to the Executive Committee of the Association of Physical Plant Administrators (APPA).

This association strives to provide leadership in educational facilities.

Zitzow formerly served a seven year term as president of CAPPA in 2009. Currently, he is on the APPA Bylaws Committee, which regularly reviews, updates and refines APPA’s bylaws on behalf of the APPA Board of Directors.

Now that Zitzow has been elected to serve as the Senior Representative to the Executive Committee he is able to be the spokesperson for the central region.

“It connects me to the world and what others are doing,” he said. “It allows UND to compete and compare with others in the nation.”

The Association of Physical Plant Administrators is an international organization comprising six regions in the United States and 23 countries. This association focuses on promoting and preserving excellence in all aspects of educational facilities management. This includes administration, planning, design, construction, energy/utilities, maintenance and operations.  The goal of the APPA is to raise awareness and value of educational facilities and their effects on recruitment and retention of all students, faculty and staff.

APPA members are expected to uphold the values of vision, transformation, stewardship, collaboration and leadership.  Throughout the years, this association has served as a medium for members to collaborate, discuss, learn and create a better vision for elevating and transforming institutions into more inviting and supportive learning environments.

As director of facilities management at UND, Zitzow oversees the maintenance of buildings and grounds on campus, services such as departmental equipment repairs and other projects that add or change the current function or use of different spaces on campus. He’s in charge of about 240 buildings, encompassing 6.2 million square feet of land; the campus itself surrounds about 550 acres. Being a part of APPA, Zitzow is able to experiment with different problems and solutions that arise at schools all over the world. Safety, security and protecting students, faculty and staff is a top priority for Zitzow.


Under Zitzow’s facilities and grounds guidance, UND has taken a big leap toward environmental conservation. Campus leaders recently signed onto a Presidential Campus Climate Commitment, which sets forth to maintain a sustainable, eco-friendly campus. UND is the first institution in North Dakota to sign this agreement.

Zitzow’s new position on the APPA ties in with the “UND GREEN” initiatives by developing innovative sustainability methods that can be seen all over campus, by getting feedback and new strategies from schools around the world. There are many new green technologies that will be brought to campus: A new solar compacter is in the works that harnesses the sun’s energy to compact the trash into a 40 pound cube that can be hauled away, retention ponds have been placed around campus to filter rainwater, and an exploratory project is under way to put a solar light in the Wilkerson Hall bus stop.

The new Gorecki Alumni Center is an innovative, environmentally-friendly phenomenon. Opening this month, this building is the first of its kind on campus and contains a solar-paneled roof, geothermal heating, recycled flooring and building materials, waterless urinals, a low-flow water system, and a dashboard displaying the energy levels of different parts of the building. This building is Platinum certified by Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), which is the highest certification of LEED. LEED certification proves that an independent third party verified that the building scores high for fostering human and environmental health through energy efficiency and eco-friendly materials. It is the only platinum certified building in North Dakota.

Besides the Gorecki Alumni Center, the new Education Building on campus is Silver Certified by LEED.

— Kate Menzies, student writer, University Relations.